Mick McMahon

By Jada Ross

Students in the spring section of Dystopian Literature and Film (English 117) will examine the work of authors such as Margaret Atwood and Octavia Butler, and analyze films like Coppola’s Apocalypse Now and Cuarón’s Children of Men. Mick McMahon, assistant teaching professor of English, chose books and films that use imagined post-apocalyptic or authoritarian societies to prompt examination of our own. “These authors and directors were able to see the roots of certain problems during their moment of writing the book, novel or short story, or directing the particular film, and manifest those concerns about government, environment or technology in a fictional dystopian landscape that connects quite clearly with the problems facing humanity today," says McMahon.

Students will showcase their learning through written, video and audio compositions. The dystopian literature & film in this course will function “as a conduit to examine social justice issues of gender, class and race that currently face our society,” says McMahon. “Students make connections with these issues through literary and film analysis, which not only increases their awareness of these social justice issues, but also helps them think critically about approaches to addressing these concerns.”

Dystopian Literature and Film is available online in an asynchronous format and has a prerequisite of English 102 with a grade of C-.